Scandal: Japanese Automotive Steel Manufacturer Falsified Strength Data

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Kobe Steel Ltd. faked the strength and durability data of automotive steel; Toyota, Nissan and Honda among affected automakers

Japanese automotive industry is again facing another scandal as the steel manufacturer Kobe Steel Ltd. has faked the strength and durability data of various aluminium and copper parts. These parts were used in various industries including auto manufacturing and several auto majors have been affected by the scandal. These include Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Subaru.

Toyota has already revealed that it used the Kobe Steel Ltd. produced materials in the hoods, doors and peripheral areas of its cars. Honda and Subaru too have used the materials extensively in their cars. All the Japanese auto manufacturers are now preparing to take legal action against the Kobe Steel for falsifying the data. Apart from these automakers, Boeing too are among the affected companies.

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As it appears, falsifying the data has been done systematically and it took place in the company’s all the four aluminium plants across Japan. The company delivered these faulty materials to more than 200 companies across various industries. After the scandal came under light, Toyota has started working on determining the affected vehicles. It is not sure what step will be taken with these affected cars.

Both Honda and Subaru too are expected to take similar steps as Toyota. The falsification of materials provided to these affected companies took place between September 2016 and August 2017. Therefore a massive number of vehicles from these three auto majors are plying on roads that come severely compromising the safety of the occupants. Estimates suggest to that around $133 million will be needed to replace the parts built with the faulty material.


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This is not the first time, Japanese auto industry has been rattled due to a major scandal. In recent past we have seen Takata airbag scandal that affected huge number of vehicles across the world. These affected airbags claimed some lives as well around the world. Apart from that, Nissan and Mitsubishi too were involved in different scams.

Source: Bloomberg